Review: A Bachelor's Pledge by Penny Hampson
Today, I'm delighted to share my review for A Bachelor's Pledge, a fast-paced romantic Regency adventure by Penny Hampson, as part of a publication day push with Rachel's Random Resources.
A Bachelor's Pledge is a romance with a strong dose of adventure.
Right from the beginning, you're thrown into the story when Phil, on an assignment with an informer – in a brothel! – helps a young lady who looks very much out of place, and in clear distress. Avoiding the heavies, they manage to flee, and he takes her to his town house where his housekeeper looks after her.
But on hearing that he would sort out a place to stay for her, Sophia is on the run again, this time to her longtime friend who secures her a place as a companion to the wife of a retired Admiral. Little does she know that, months later, her path would cross Phil's again in the bustling port town of Falmouth. But it's not only Phil who's there – the woman running the brothel has also turned up. And she wants Sophia back. But that's not the only thing that woman does...
A Bachelor's Pledge is a riveting ride through England at war with France, where spies and traitors walk the same roads. The fast pace is maintained throughout, and you just have to keep on reading as one thing after another crops up, spoiling not only Sophia's best plans, but also Phil's. His position is soon compromised.
With an array of quirky characters, A Bachelor's Pledge takes you back to those times, where even smaller ports were flourishing with ships from all over the world. You can sense the danger emanating from across the Channel, and there's a sense of urgency to it all.
Sophia's background lies shrouded in mystery. Raised by an aunt, it's only later in the story that she uncovers her family line. And it's not what she'd expected. She's a feisty character, and I find her direct attitude refreshing. She's a survivor.
Phil's secret missions take him away from his estate, but at times I had the feeling he may just be in the wrong job, as he appears to rush into a couple of traps or trusts the wrong people when all the warning signs are there. But his heart is in the right place, and he soon makes sure Sophia's safe.
The backdrop – beginning in London, then leading to the bustling naval town of Falmouth in Cornwall – is meticulously researched, and the author brings it to life. Penny Hampson's knowledge of the area shines through, providing the reader with a useful sense of place.
Sadly, the ending seemed a bit too rushed, as if the author was trying to cut the word count. I'd have liked to see the bit about her father's family expanded. But otherwise, it's a satisfying end that ties up the main plot and the various sub-plots neatly.
A Bachelor's Pledge is a gripping, fast-paced romance adventure with stronger focus on the adventure side than the romance. Just as I like them...
The woman who haunts his dreams
Secret agent Phil Cullen is upset when he discovers that the young woman he rescued from Mrs Newbody’s establishment has absconded from his housekeeper’s care without a word. Thinking he has been deceived, he resolves to forget about her… something easier said than done.
The man she wants to forget
Sophia Turner is horrified when she is duped into entering a notorious house of ill-repute. Then a handsome stranger comes to her aid. Desperate that no one learns of this scandalous episode, Sophia flees to the one friend she knows she can trust. With luck, she will never see her mysterious rescuer again.
But fate has other plans…
Months later, Phil is on the trail of an elusive French agent, and Sophia is a respectable lady’s companion, when fate again intervenes, taking their lives on a collision course.
Traitors, spies, and shameful family secrets - will these bring Sophia and Phil together… or drive them apart?
Buy Link: mybook.to/ABachelorsPledge
Some time ago, Penny Hampson decided to follow her passion for history by studying with the Open University. She graduated with honours and went on to complete a post-graduate degree.
Penny then landed her dream role, working in an environment where she was surrounded by rare books and historical manuscripts. Flash forward nineteen years, and the opportunity came along to indulge her other main passion – writing.
Penny joined the New Writers’ Scheme of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and three years later published her debut novel, A Gentleman’s Promise, a historical mystery/romance and the first in The Gentlemen Series. An Officer’s Vow soon followed and the latest in the series is A Bachelor’s Pledge.
But never happy in a rut, Penny also writes contemporary suspense with paranormal and romantic elements. Her first book in this genre is The Unquiet Spirit, published by Darkstroke.
Penny lives with her family in Oxfordshire, and when she is not writing, she enjoys reading, walking, swimming, and the odd gin and tonic (not all at the same time).
For more on Penny’s writing, visit her blog: https://pennyhampson.co.uk/blog/